Menard inmate’s death probed; Second unusual prisoner death in two months

2013-02-27T07:00:00Z 2013-09-13T09:27:58Z Menard inmate’s death probed; Second unusual prisoner death in two monthsBY BECKY MALKOVICH, THE SOUTHERN The Southern
February 27, 2013 7:00 am  • 

Authorities are investigating a suspicious death at Menard Correctional Center, the second suspicious inmate death at the facility in the past two months.

Yusuf Abuzir, 64, was pronounced dead Monday in the inpatient health care unit of the facility, Randolph County Coroner Randy Dudenbostel said.

Abuzir was serving a life sentence for a 2008 murder in Cook County.

Abuzir’s death is under investigation as a suspicious, Dudenbostel said. An autopsy has been conducted but its results were not being released Tuesday.

Abuzir was involved in an altercation with at least one other inmate in January and hospitalized away from the correctional center. He was later returned to Menard and had been in the health care unit.

Dudenbostel declined to say whether the injuries Abuzir suffered in the altercation contributed to his death.

Abuzir’s death is under investigation, Illinois Department of Corrections spokeswoman Stacey Solano said. Also under investigation is the death of Jason Hall, a Menard inmate who was found dead in his cell Jan. 31.

Hall was serving 13 years for vehicular hijacking.

The Randolph County state’s attorney has previously referred to the investigation into Hall’s death as a “murder investigation.”

No new information was available about the Hall investigation from either Solano or Dudenbostel.

Abuzir’s death is the latest in a series of violent incidents at Illinois prisons. Several correctional officers have been attacked and inmate-on-inmate assaults reportedly have been on the rise in recent months.

Union officials have said the increase in violence can be attributed to understaffing, overcrowding and the closure of some state prisons, including the supermax facility at Tamms.


On Twitter: @beckymalkovich

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